Hey guys! Two big things happened for me over the past 2 days: I ran the farthest I’ve ever run and I turned 25 yesterday 🙂
I am feeling pretty sore still but pretty accomplished as well. Race recap today and birthday festivities recap coming tomorrow!
The day of the race, I woke up and already knew it had been pouring all night long. The forecast was pure rain the entire day. I was feeling pretty nervous about the race just for that fact. Weather when we arrived?
Very wet and rainy indeed!
My friend and I waited inside the highschool where the bib pickup was until just before the start of the race. It was pretty chaotic since there was the 20 miler and a half marathon going on at the same time. Over 1,000 people were signed up just for the 20 miler, I believe.
However, we got really lucky and it stopped raining about 3 minutes into the race! I really didn’t get wet at all, which is just so crazy-lucky to me.
The easiest way to me to recap this whole race is by the mileage, since it was so long. Bear with me!
Miles 1-4: The race started uphill and my calves were on fire from the start. I was really trying to get in my groove, but couldn’t. I was also super nervous for the first few miles. Just race nerves, I guess.
Miles 4-6: My husband met up with me at mile 4, the first of a few times I’d see him along the course. It was nice because I didn’t know when to expect him, so each time I saw him it was like a surprise. After I saw him and had my first water stop, I really got in my groove and felt “with it.”
However, the whole time from mile 4-6 I had to pee super bad. Made a little pit stop in some bushes for that and then felt much better!
Miles 6-14: still felt great, was really pushing myself, passing some people, all into my music, picked up my speed for a couple of parts. This was probably the best part of the race for me, and when I started seeing some amazing views.
Miles 14-16: my left hip flex/IT band was bothering me a lot at this point, probably from the hills and the fact that I was running kind of lopsided due to the slant of the road.
I stopped at another water station and talked to the volunteers for a few minutes while I stretch out my hip, had some water, and another GU. That stop gave me my second wind until about mile 16.
Miles 16-18: really started to feel it between those miles. Mentally, I was still fresh, though. For some reason I started focusing on getting to mile 18 and then telling myself “only 2 more miles.”
Miles 18-20: heard Nike+ say “18 miles.” Glorious sound! If only I had known my Nike+ was a little off… I was hoping I could just stick it out for 2 more miles, but it was really like 3 more. And I had no idea where the finish line actually was.
I was okay through 18-19. From 19-20, I started getting really confused though. I saw 2 runners with bibs running toward me… I never really figured out why, but I started thinking, “Oh, my gosh, do we have to turn around and go back somewhere???” We didn’t, so I don’t know what those ladies were doing.
The Finish: It was kind of cool because this lady just came up to me probably a quarter mile before the finish line and started talking to me. She was like “we should be done soon, I think!”
We started chatting a little but then as we realized the finish was there, she said “You can go first” as it was really kind of single file space for the finish line. I just thought that was so cool, so I sprinted to the finish.
My husband and friends were waiting for me. I was awarded my medal, but they took my bib. 🙁 The bibs were not chip timed, so to make sure we got timed properly they either needed the bag tag (which I, of course, took off) or the bib. So I didn’t get to keep it! Sad!
This race is considered a last long run race for Boston Marathoners, so there were a lot of serious runners there. It was really neat to be surrounded by the Boston atmosphere. Seeing all the Boston jackets from previous years, 2013 especially, was just amazing – to be in their presence and know we are all representing Boston together.
I’m so glad that I did this race to get my pre-marathon nerves out of the way. At the end, my hips and feet were like on fire, but I didn’t feel totally dead. Part of me feels like, wow, 6 more miles? How will I make that happen? But another part of me realizes that I was mentally capping myself out at 20 miles for this race, so it should be different for the actual marathon.
I made no time goals of any kind for this race, and I’m doing the same thing for the marathon. I finished in about 3 hours and 40 minutes. I was actually surprised when I saw the timer at the end because I didn’t calculate what time I would be at. It was really nice to let that go.
My only goal was to run the entire thing, which I did. I stopped for maybe a total of a few minutes for a bathroom break and to get some water a couple of times, but that’s it. There was no excessive stopping, which is awesome to me!
It was also neat that this race coincided with my birthday weekend. Never in a million years would I believe anyone if they told me I’d willingly run 20 miles the day before my 25th birthday.
It was nice to do something so accomplishing before turning a quarter century old. Yes, most of my birthday was spent pretty sore. But at least I didn’t feel guilty about eating all the cake 😉